(CNN) -- Fast bowler Mitchell Johnson inspired a stunning Australian fightback in the Ashes series as England were skittled out for 187 on the second day of the third Test in Perth.
Johnson ripped through the England batting order with six wickets for 38 to give his side an unlikely first innings lead of 81.
Australia were 119 for three wickets by the close of play, an overall lead of 200.
England openers, captain Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook, took them to 78 without loss in reply to Australia's 268, until Johnson, with fine support from Ryan Harris (3-59) run amok.
Dropped after his ineffective performance in the drawn Test in Brisbane, the left-arm paceman found his form in helpful bowling conditions at the WACA which he exploited to the full.
He removed Cook, England's leading run scorer in the series, for 32 then Jonathan Trott (4) and Kevin Pietersen for a duck to spark a dramatic collapse.
Harris chipped in to claim Strauss for 52 and when Johnson had Paul Collingwood trapped lbw for 5 with another swinging, full-pitched delivery, England found themselves five wickets down before lunch.
Only a battling innings of 53 from Ian Bell rescued the tourists from total collapse but he could find few partners as the wickets continued to tumble in the second session.
Peter Siddle (1-25) chipped in to remove the last recognized batsman Matt Prior for 12 with Johnson and Harris mopping up the tail.
England, 1-0 up in the five-match series after their crushing win in Adelaide, needed quick wickets to revive their chances and initially had some success with Steven Finn removing Phil Hughes and Australian captain Ricky Ponting cheaply.
Chris Tremlett also claimed the wicket of Michael Clarke (20) to leave the home side on 64 for three wickets, but opener Shane Watson (61 not out) and Mike Hussey (24 not out) batted them into an dominant position with an unbroken stand of 55.
But it was the earlier heroics of Johnson, who made a swashbuckling 62 with the bat in Australia's first innings, which could have changed the course of the match and the series.
"I was disappointed (to miss out in Adelaide), you don't want to miss a Test for your country but it has worked in my favor," he told Sky Sports.
"I got to work on a few things and get the confidence back, and coming here I worked really well with the other bowlers who did an exceptional job."
Meanwhile, South Africa are heading for a crushing victory in the first Test against India at Centurion.
The hosts closed on 366 for two wickets, a massive first innings lead of 230 runs over India, who are rated the best Test team in the world.
The Indian first innings was wrapped up for a paltry 136 in the first over of the second day before the South African batsmen took charge.
Captain Graeme Smith scored 62 and Alviro Petersen 77 with Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis both posting undefeated centuries.
The pair have shared an unbroken stand for the third wicket of exactly 200 with Harbhajan Singh taking both wickets to fall.